Weird concentration problem

| Health and happiness | 6 Comments

Had that weird concentration problem again today. It seems to be getting worse at times and it is worrying me somewhat. What happens is this: when I try to read a book, take part in a conversation, watch a video on the television, listen to a presentation, or even explain things myself at a meeting, my mind wanders so badly that I completely lose track of what I am doing. I fail to follow the gist of a discussion or forget what I was doing. Like time spinning away and not realizing it. This feeling reminds me alot of how I used to daydream when I was a child sitting in class, but it is much worse. Getting worse by the week. A normal daydream you can overcome by trying deliberately to chase it away through the extra efforts of concentration. However, now no matter how hard I try to focus myself this does not help either. In fact, if out of desperation I try too hard, then the flow of concentration just slips away even faster. This leads to panic and the fear that I will not understand what people are saying which compounds the obstacle worse than it should be. Is this psychological or is there some other source of this mental setback?

Later on in the day I saw two magnificent swans perched on the grass next to the water. Behind them and in a perfect semi-circle were their five offspring, no longer little chicks but grown adolescent swans with grayish feathers slowly turning to white like their parents. Renewed life coming into form ready to replace those who had created them and some day would be no more. This reminded me alot of how the weird concentration problem comes into being and takes gentle control without me realizing it.


Sounds like you need a vacation to California! We'll take care of you!! We have swans too! ;-) And you can daydream on the long flight(s). That's was vacations are for!

You know what Pat? I think your are absolutely right! That's just what I need: a vacation. And to think that I was getting all worried about my sanity. Well, I hope that is the reason after all, but one never know for sure.

I experience the lack of concentration from time to time as well. I find, however, that if I find someone at least as intelligent as I (and I am normally modest - this is just being honest) then the conversation we have will stimulate my mind and I will remember how to think and concentrate better. Does this say something about the people I work with everyday? Unfortunately, it does!

You know Stu, to be honest with you I am not sure if this is the right answer for me personally. Even though two people can be equally intelligent (if that ever could be measured some way I am not sure), their wavelengths might not overlap very well. Canceling each others amplitudes out and/or mixing so randomly that only random noise is produced. Since the other person is unwilling to admit his ignorance that means that my concentration has left me for the time being.

Your symptoms seem to be consistent with ADD, or attention deficit disorder. At age 38 or so, I was diagnosed with it. What a revelation! I suffered from a problem with concentration since my earliest childhood, but nevertheless, somehow I managed, through much ongoing stress and difficulty, to make it through college and even grad school. My symptoms were similar to what you describe, such as trouble following conversation, and giving presentations at meetings. I also found it so easy to lose myself--and time--in technical tasks such as web page development, and had much trouble in budgeting my time realistically and setting my priorities. I was prescribed the usual medication for ADD, the stimulant ritalin, which truly improves my concentration, and without doubt, improves my productivity at work. Such a medication is not a perfect solution and is not without drawbacks, but it has been a lifesaver for me, and helps keep me, my concentration, and my work, for the most part on track. Kiffin, is it possible that you might have some degree of ADD? I encourage you to do some research on it, and consider the possibility. If you find you share some of the common symptoms, I encourage to seek treatment. Living with ADD is such a stress on the person who has it, and can also effect everyone he or she interacts with, especially ones family.

Well Gene, your argument sounds pretty convincing. I will definitely look into it. My hunch is that it is closer to some form of depression rather than ADD but I could be wrong. I think all of us suffer various combinations of one or the other mental shortcomings. The secret is being able to realize it, accept it and go on with life knowing that there is always hope.

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This personal weblog was started way back on July 21, 2001 which means that it is 7-21-2001 old.

So far this blog contains no less than 2461 entries and as many as 1877 comments.

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Graduated from Stanford 6-5-1979 ago.

Kiffin Rockwell was shot down and killed 9-23-1916 ago.

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First met Thea in Balestrand, Norway 6-14-1980 ago.

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